Although Amazon strictly limits your ability to shop through “authorized” stores as part of its policy – if seems that if there isn’t a branch in a country then you fall back on Amazon itself which has finally started to realize there is value in overseas sales through its “Global” service. Still, it has a long way to go to catch up with many of the online etailers who are already enabling international online shopping.
Take http://www.ishop-america.com/, a site that offers you access to many online etail sites, for instance. They are upfront about their service and announce that they are the “portal to All American online shops.” Now that’s quite a statement to make, isn’t it, but when you look at the stores that support this site, you see they are not kidding.
For example, aside from being “committed to helping you shop[p at any and all US-based web stores” and ensure that your shipment gets where it is supposed to go, as well as processing payment, you quickly find that they are not just any website making noise about their connections. We we looked into the stores to which they had access we found shops such as:
- Dave’s New York
- Frederick’s of Hollywood
These are just a few of the listings they offered. If you are looking for something electronic, you will find access to:
- Best Buy
- Radio Shack
All it takes to use this portal is filling out an order form and you have access to the names mentioned plus hundreds of other partner shops. It is quite an advantage, especially if you want to purchase from Amazon and are living in Australia. Amazon does offer direct shipping of some limited items through its Global division, but, if you want full access to Amazon you need to use a shop lie ishopUSA.
One thing you will find if you use an independent lie iShopUSA is that there are some shops who have not signed formal partnerships with them. In that case, ishopUSA will still help you out. Or, as they put it on their website: “What if the store you want is not one of our Partner Shops? No problem. You are not limited to our Partner Shops or to the other stores you will find on our website. You may shop from any US-based web store.”
That generally is the attitude of any online portal. Another shop to look closely at is www.shopusashipinternational.com. Their listing of partners is truly amazing and their customers are very happy with the treatment they receive. For example, an Australian-based shopper from Melbourne, writes: “I was concerned about my fragile kitchen set, but received it in great shape. Thanks SUSI for safe packing.”
This one site alone gives you the ability to access Amazon, ebay, Izod, Sony, Nintendo and more. They also handle your shipping with an instant quote calculator and they ship with either the Postal Service, which saves you considerable money. The nice feature here is that you know right away not only what your cost will be for the item you want but also the cost of your shipping. There’s not guessing and there’s no one telling you that you cannot buy a certain item or telling you where you can ship it.
Another, similar store that has an excellent reputation, is www.iglobalstores.com. Working with a key set of strong American partners – Ziggos.com, e-replacementparts.com, Kolobags.com and boaters.com – you have access to thousands of items that will be shipped directly to you. Iglobalstores has chosen a small set of etailers who work well with them and they meet your needs, whether it is for a new Makita drill or a new boat engine. They also work with their own partner site www.iglobalexport.com, which not only uses the same basic set of stores but add others to enhance your shopping experience.
In sum, you will find that there are any number of stores that will work with you help you purchase from US online shops, even though you live overseas. As our Australian-based customer said ofwww.shopusashipinternational.com, she was very happy with her experience and we suspect you will be also.
All of these stores are great shopping enablers in that they not only get you access to stores you might not think available – Amazon, for example – and then they will handle the rest of the transaction for you from finding you a US shipping address to filling out all the customs and other shipping forms and setting up the shipment. It’s an easy process that works.